Monday, June 21, 2010

“A young man from a small town, with a very large imagination...” (2010 Edition)

When I began writing mwbh in 2002, there was a discussion among Catholic weblog owners concerning the mention of personal material on their sites. One insight shared by the discussion's hostess, Eve Tushnet, was worth noting:

... [W]hen it's presented with a little more care for one's own privacy, the personal aspects of blogging can help other people really understand your philosophy -- the underlying worldview that unites your stances on, say, gun control, Bruce Springsteen, and race relations in Milwaukee. Blogs help show that politics isn't -- or shouldn't be -- some disconnected policy preferences; political beliefs should flow from underlying ethical and ultimately metaphysical beliefs that you live with all day long. (Or try to, anyway.) ...

Shortly thereafter, I wrote a bio to introduce myself to my new audience. But after eight years of the road more or less traveled, I decided it was in need of revision.

My name (for those didn't catch it by now) is David Lawrence Alexander. I am a 55-year-old graphic/multimedia designer and videographer/editor working for the Federal government. (The "multimedia" part is a work in progress. See below.) I have a townhouse in Arlington, Virginia, across the Potomac River from what is politely known as "the Nation's capital." My son, Paul, is going on twenty-five years old, and lives in Atlanta, Georgia, where he majors in interactive design and game development at the über-prestigious Savannah College of Art and Design. My best friend and ever-present companion, "Sal" (not her real name), a native of the Philippines, is a personal care assistant.

My roots in the southwest quadrant of Ohio date to the 1840s, at least five generations. The majority of my ancestors came from the Alsace-Lorraine region of what was sometimes Germany, but what is now France. The "Alexandre" line came to northern continental Europe from Scotland in the 17th century, after some sort of unpleasantness with England, so it is likely that I am descended from Scottish chieftains. Or something.

I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, just three days after Christmas, and the worst time of the year to have a birthday. My parents have always sent me a card, if no one else does, and if only out of guilt.

When I was still in the cradle, we moved to a village just east of Cincinnati (and closer to our "kin and ken") known as Milford, where I lived until I moved to DC in 1980. The oldest of four -- boy, girl, boy, girl, in that order -- I attended Catholic grade school and high school. From there, I earned a Bachelor of Science in Design from the University of Cincinnati. After two years of various studio assignments, I got the big break from my rich uncle. (Sam. Maybe you know him.) I have been on his payroll every since.

I am the only member of my immediate family to have left the Cincinnati area. I sign all my letters home, "Your long lost son ..."

Along the way, I learned to play both the guitar and the banjo (the latter in the old-time mountain style; I don't do bluegrass), and can fake my way through several other instruments laying around the house. I've also been known to sing. In addition, I have been an avid folkdancer for more than thirty years. My passion in recent years has been zydeco, which is the music and dance of the Creole people of southwest Louisiana.

At 11, I became an altar boy; at 17, an Eagle Scout; at 35, a purple belt in karate. I still claim all three titles. Speaking of Boy Scouting, I returned to the uniform after a long hiatus in July of 2004, and am currently an Assistant District Commissioner with the National Capital Area Council of the BSA.

From 2004 to 2009, I pursued diploma studies in web design and interactive media at the Art Institute of Washington (see above). I stopped short of obtaining the diploma. Long story.

I also spend much of Sunday morning at the Church of Saint John the Beloved in McLean, Virginia, where I am a Master of Ceremonies for the Traditional Latin Mass. Sometimes on the night before, Sal and I go dancing, where I am into Latin there as well.

Finally, I read too much for my own good, which was enough to make me think I should never have an unpublished thought -- hence the presence of this site you are reading now.

So ... what's next?

(Apologies to John Prine, from whose lyrics the title of this entry originates.)

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